The Linux 3.1 kernel has a number of new features, but for some hardware there's a new power regression.
Among the 3.1 work are Nouveau Fermi improvements, Intel Sandy Bridge performance optimizations, OpenRISC architecture support, a Nintendo Wiimote HID driver, and Intel Poulsbo enhancements.
In the Linux 3.1-rc3 release announcement, Linus also praises his new Intel laptop for being able to handle building the kernel better while travelling (i.e. during LinuxCon 2011). His new laptop is presumably one of the (wonderful) Sandy Bridge notebooks. Below is the -rc3 release announcement for Linux 3.1.
It's a day late - I was just too hungry tired after the DM class to release it yesterday. But there it is, all fresh and new.
And a few thank-yous are in order: things are looking good. The diffstat looks reasonable (the one big addition is in Documentation), and while I could have wished for even less churn, I'm pretty happy. The rc2 to rc3 shortlog is appended, and I think it mostly looks pretty reasonable and short. Which is not to say that I'm not hoping that things will calm down even further in the later rc's, but at least so far I don't think I've had much reason to complain.
Another thank-you goes to Intel: this release has been full of travel (happily now all completed), first due to a week of vacation during the merge window, and then for my DM class weekends and LinuxCon. And the new laptop made it much less painful to do even "allmodconfig" builds while on the road.
So go out and test.